Betting On The Canadian Football League

The Canadian Football League expects to be a decent portion of Ontario sports betting activity. With numerous teams across the Great White North, it has large followings for each of the franchises. This page will break down everything you need to know about betting on CFL games and players as the online sports betting industry develops.

While the CFL lacks the talent level compared to the NFL, it’s still gaining traction in the United States. Plenty of football fanatics love to get extra weeks of the sport throughout the summer leading up to collegiate and professional action in the fall. The Grey Cup, which is the CFL’s championship game, draws a major audience in Canada and is usually shown on cable TV in the US.

Canadian Football League Odds At The Best Sportsbooks

Odds for in football league are primarily calculated the same way that they are for other sports and in other countries. Player data, win ratios, and other attributes are taken into account by professional line makers or line-making algorithms.

Then, Canada’s sports wagering platforms (and eventual mobile apps) will take that data and use it to come up with enjoyable, potentially profitable wagers for both sides of a bet. This way, both underdog and favorite bettors can expect to win a good amount of cash if they are correct.

Odds are calculated and displayed in easy-to-understand formats. For instance, odds for moneyline wagers on Canadian football league games could be displayed in the following two ways:

  • Team A (+120) vs. Team B (-150)
  • Team A (2.2) vs. Team B (1.66)

The first example is displayed in the American odds format. An easy way to understand these odds are through $100 bets or adjusting for winnings. Placing a $100 wager on Team A (+120) would win $120 plus the initial bet. Placing a $150 wager on Team B (-150) would win $100 plus the initial bet.

The second example is displayed in the Decimal odds format. This is common across Canadian sportsbooks and other international offerings. It provides the same odds as the first example, just in a different format.

Again, payout is easily understood in $100 bets. Placing $100 on Team A (2.2) would win $120 plus the initial bet. Placing $100 on Team B (1.66) would win $66.67 plus the initial bet.

Team A is the underdog team and is rated least likely to win. Team B is the favorite team to win and is most likely to be victorious according to statistics. However, odds can change their appearance based on the wagers they are paired with. You can find more information about wager types on Canadian football league games below.

Where Can You Bet On The Canadian Football League?

Commercial sportsbooks and government-owned gambling platforms are available to place CFL wagers throughout Canada. Ontario’s gaming industry is regulated by the AGCO, or Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario. Platforms such as DraftKings, BetMGM, PointsBet, and many more are all available and allow CFL wagers. This includes game-by-game bets, team futures, and more.

Based on the province, check on the lottery-based options available online. Sports betting could be available 100% online, or there’s a hybrid format that requires submitting a ticket at a lottery retailer. Where commercial sportsbooks are available, these online platforms allow sports betting fully online.

What Kinds Of Bets Can Be Placed On The Canadian Football League?

Once retail and online sportsbooks launch in greater numbers, you’ll be able to place a wide variety of bets on CFL games and players.

Moneyline

Moneyline bets are the standard wager type that some betting platforms already offer! These are simple wagers where you just bet on which team will win or lose a match.

Spread

Spread bets are common and popular bets for football and other games. They involve “betting the spread,” which means you either bet that the underdog team wins the game outright or loses by a certain number of points OR that the favorite team wins the game by a certain number of points. 

Totals

Totals bets are popular since they don’t involve betting on a winner outright. Instead, the oddsmakers give out a total points value for a given match and you have to decide whether the combined points from both teams will be above or below that predicted total.

Parlay

Most Canadians are already familiar with parlay bets as those wagers were the only types available for quite some time. They involve multiple games or events strung together into a single large wager. You have to get all the bets or “legs” correct in order to win your payout. It’ll be interesting to see how popular these bets are now that single-event wagering has recently become available.

What Is A Canadian Football League Futures Bet?

CFL futures bets are already available in many Canadian provinces and within commercial sportsbooks in the United States. Futures bets are wagers on future football league games and events, like the Grey Cup winner (equivalent to the NFL’s Super Bowl) and who wins the East or West Division.

With these bets, the earlier you place your wager, the bigger your potential payout since the odds will be more against you.  CFL championship bets will be a favorite futures wager type for many bettors. Some sportsbooks will offer odds for divisional winners.

Here are the best odds available for futures to win the Grey Cup and the East and West Divisions.

 

How To Place Prop Bets On Canadian Football League

Prop or proposition bets may also be available at select sportsbooks. With proposition bets, you bet on specific events or actions within a game, not the game outcome overall. For example, you may bet that a Canadian football player makes a touchdown or makes a unique pass.

How To Bet On The Canadian Football League

There are a couple of different ways to bet on the CFL right now. People in some provinces can visit a casino or racing center that has a sports wagering outlet. There, bettors can place single-event wagers on CFL games depending on what types of bets they have available. Right now, futures for the 2022 Grey Cup are only available.

Alternatively, residents can check out their local provincial platforms. All provinces offer single-event wagers in some capacity through their government-run betting platforms. This could be fully online, or a hybrid format where a betting slip is filled out online and scanned at a retailer.

The Ontario government is currently looking at regulations and rules for third-party or commercial sports betting operators. In the near future, you’ll be able to download a mobile betting platform from operators like DraftKings or BetMGM and place bets on CFL games.

Once your sportsbook of choice launches, you’ll need to follow this process to place a bet on CFL games:

  • Visit the desktop or mobile website of the betting platform, or download the sportsbook of your choice. Install the sportsbook on your iOS or Android mobile device if downloading.
  • Register for the sportsbook according to its rules and regulations. Fill out personal information for verification and accept terms and conditions.
  • Fund your account using online deposit methods, like credit or debit card transactions.
  • Then navigate to the betting line area of the desktop or mobile sportsbook and put your money down on a CFL wager.

Since Canadian provinces will likely emulate the US model, the entire process should be rather quick and you’ll be able to enjoy sports betting from the comfort of your home!

Canadian Football League Partnerships

PointsBet is an official sponsor for the Ottawa Redblacks. The Ontario-based team is the first franchise to have a partnership with a gaming operator. Expect to see branding for PointsBet Canada across the Redblacks’ team uniforms and home stadium.

The league has a multi-year partnership with BetRegal, an online sportsbook and casino company. BetRegal is now the official sports gaming partner of the CFL.

Canadian Football League Sports Betting FAQs

How popular is single-event betting on the Canadian Football League?

Considering there was a strong effort to legalize single-event wagering in Canada, we expect it’s very popular across the country. And for good reason – single wagers are obviously more successful to win with than piling up parlays. With limited action to wager on each week in the CFL, being able to place bets on single-event activity significantly opens up the market.

Does the Canadian Football League have any partnerships with a sportsbook?

Yes. Commercial sportsbooks have partnerships with the CFL and its franchises. This includes PointsBet Canada holding a deal with the Ottawa Redblacks. BetRegal is a CFL league-wide sponsor, but they advertise their free-to-play site as they are not licensed by the AGCO or iGO.

Where can you bet on championship games for the Canadian Football League?

You can place futures bets for the Grey Cup winner on many commercial sportsbooks and lottery-run platforms across the country of Canada. Another option is taking the winner of the East and West Divisions.

Is DraftKings legal in Canada?

DraftKings Sportsbook is available in the province of Ontario. Residents can use the sportsbook on the mobile app or desktop website. Unfortunately, Ontario cannot utilize daily fantasy sports due to AGCO limitations. The rest of Canada still has access to DFS.

Is FanDuel available in Canada?

Yes, FanDuel Sportsbook is available in the province of Ontario. Similar to DraftKings, Ontario is the only province where the sportsbook platform is available with no DFS options. That’s completely reverse for the other provinces.

Does DraftKings have odds for Canadian Football League games?

They currently have odds for games and futures available in the United States and the province of Ontario. In comparison to the NFL, betting markets are unfortunately limited. However, this could improve as the commercial market matures in the Great White North.

About the Author

Amber Hoffman

Amber is the Managing Editor of Toronto Sports Media. She writes for a variety of websites in diverse industries, including gaming and travel and is a fan of international football (not "soccer") and Gaelic sports.